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Sanctification - Russian River Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,000 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,000
Reviews: 571
rAvg: 4.33
pDev: 9.24%
Wants: 1,066
Gots: 622 | FT: 38
Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Wild Ale |  6.75% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 10-27-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,000 | Reviews: 571 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of craytonic

District of Columbia

4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

Appearance: Light golden-sun-lemon-yellow with a slight haze. Nice head and lacing.

Smell: Great citrus/lemon funk on the nose - barnyard, hay, wood, etc. Also white fruits like pears, apples, and white grapes

Taste: Lemongrass, peach, orange and pears with the barnyard funk described above. Very dry, nice sourness.

Mouthfeel: Very dry with a light, champagne-like carbonation. I wish it had a bit more body, finishes a tad thin.

Drinkability: Off the charts for a wild ale, this one disappears.

09-10-2009 02:04:55 | More by craytonic
Photo of pwoods


4.38/5  rDev +1.2%

Big thanks to zminor for the trade!

750ml corked and caged brown bottle, poured into a tulip. Batch 3 from '07.

A: Bright lemony color with a nice pearly white head. Decent retention and lacing.

S: Nice soft funkiness, barnyard and musty. Light grainy with a bit of Belgian sweetness.

T/M: Pleasant funky and tart flavors. It's been in the bottle awhile and I definitely think that's helped develop the very tasty flavors. No hops to speak of but it has a nice husky, earthy grain bill that doesn't overpower the tasty funk. Body is light with healthy carbo, still.

D: Drinks very easily, too bad it's impossible to get.

09-21-2009 17:05:51 | More by pwoods
Photo of Beertracker


4.58/5  rDev +5.8%

From the label...Sanctification [sanc.ti.fi.ca.tion], n. 1. to set apart for sacred use; consecrate. 2. to make holy; purity. 3. to give religious sanction to, as with an oath or vow.

Sanctification pours up effervescent with a cascading white head which dissipates rather quickly revealing a slightly hazy straw golden body. The moderately acidic aroma is surprisingly complex with a nice intermingling of Brett character (earthy barnyard, horse blanket, etc...) & citrus fruits (grapefruit, lemon, tangerine) with some mild toasted oak & warm vanilla wafer notes. The flavor starts off slightly grainy with some earthy hop spiciness that carries into a tart, yeasty, zesty finish. This light to medium-light bodied sour blonde ale is refreshing and surprisingly complex. Russian River's Sanctification is truly a wild ale that will have the sour beer fans rejoicing at its wonderous pucker power. "Who's afraid of the "Big Bad BRETT?" Certainly not me!

CHEERS! Beertracker

01-29-2008 07:42:04 | More by Beertracker
Photo of sharpski


4/5  rDev -7.6%

06-03-2013 16:58:21 | More by sharpski
Photo of LambicPentameter


4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

Enjoyed out of a brown 375 mL C&C bottle with a bottling date of 11/28/12. Poured into a Boulevard Smokestack edition tulip glass.

Appearance - Pours a cloudy yellow the color of egg yolk with darker orangish highlights as well. Foam is about a finger-and-a-half of ivory microbubbles that is so fine it appears like a layer of thick fog atop the body. After dissipating to a half finger of head pretty quickly (30 secs), it remains throughout leaving silky slick light lacing.

Smell - The Brett really dominates the lighter blonde base beer, pushing the other flavors to the side. Funky and tart with some hints of starfruit and lemonade.

Taste - Wonderfully tart at first, but fades back quickly to reveal sourdough complexity and citrus rind and fruity spice. Again the Brett provides a barnyard element that balances well with this otherwise delicate beer.

Mouthfeel - Effervescent and yet creamy at the same time. Light bodied with high levels of carbonation with a dry finish.

Overall a fantastically balanced sour and one I could see being a gateway for people looking to get into sour ales. Tart but not overpowering and highly drinkable.

07-06-2013 03:59:43 | More by LambicPentameter
Photo of kbrown


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

05-17-2014 14:58:16 | More by kbrown
Photo of pokesbeerdude


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

375ml bottle into a NB Globe, purchased at Supermarket Liquors in Ft. Collins, CO. $11. Batch 005

A: Pours a clear gold with an enormous white head, a good two inches worth. Violent carbonation is moving through the glass. Excellent clarity. Awesome lacing is left behind as the head slowly fades away.

S: Incredibly funky, tons of barnyard and staank. Some definite sour lemons, and an interesting lemon/lime characteristic has started to emerge. Smells funky and sour and awesome.

T: This beer has gotten to be much more sour than I originally remember it. Huge barnyard funk and sour cherries and lemons find their way in there. Again this cool lemon/lime flavor is starting to show up in the beer, this is aging nicely. Nice oak barrel flavors.

M: Light, crisp, prickly carbonation and a dry finish. Puckering and a nice amount of lacto spit thickening going on too. Spot on.

O: My favorite sour from Russian River, really great stuff and it is aging wonderfully. Not much else to say other than this is killer stuff!

04-14-2012 00:15:06 | More by pokesbeerdude
Photo of spoony


4.43/5  rDev +2.3%

From a 375 ml bottle (dated November 28, 2012) into a tulip.

A-This brew produces a healthy, three-finger head of shiny, soapy, off-white foam. The head hangs around for quite a while, which isn't surprising since carbonation is very visible in the beer. The brew is yellowish, gold in color and a touch murky.

S-The smell is a big dose of funk. There is a lot of brett here giving off that earthy, musty note that plays quite well against the slightly tart lemon, mandarin orange, and straw characters of the beer. The smell is complex and pleasing; I keep sticking my nose in to get another whiff.

T-The taste is also quite heavy on the brett. I taste a lactic, earthy tartness that combines nicely with lemon, mandarin orange, straw, candy sugar, and a touch of oaky vinegar. Again, pleasing and drinkable. The sour factor is low to medium, and fits well with rest of the brew.

M-The brew starts out with a wave of noticeable carbonation and finishes on the slick side. The heft is moderate and pairs nicely with the flavors.

O-This is another great Russian River wild/sour ale. Brewers can sometimes overplay their hand when it comes to brett beers, but this one manages to keep the smell and flavors that brett imparts without making brett the only thing going on. I'm not sure if this was the right beer to drink on a snowy March evening, but I will certainly search this out again in warmer seasons.

03-11-2013 03:06:04 | More by spoony
Photo of CityofBals


3.5/5  rDev -19.2%

09-12-2013 01:56:43 | More by CityofBals
Photo of drtth


4.68/5  rDev +8.1%

Poured into a Duvel glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically. This bottle is from batch 006.

Appearance: As poured the beer is a hazed dark lemon yellow with a 1/2” white creamy head that soon begins to recede to a ring and a 1/16” layer. Sipping creates sheets of foam that slide back down to the liquid on one side but on the other leave arches, legs and speckles of foam to show where the sip was taken. While the layer of foam thins over time the effects of taking a sip persist for most of the beer.

Smell: The pleasant gentle aroma is immediately detectable during the pour and it is clear that Brettanomyces yeast has been at work here. There is some musty funk mingled with lemon zest and traces of green apple. In the background there is a bit of malt but in a very muted supporting role.

Taste: The flavor is crisp, clean and refreshing with a nice dose of tartness from the lemon zest and the green apple. The malt and funk remain in the background, noticeable but in a supporting role. I can easily imagine that the funk will become more pronounced with more bottle age.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is on the light side of medium bodied, soft, slightly creamy with persistent gentle carbonation. The finish is on the long side o medium with the tartness and a touch of sweetness fading out into a nicely dry, slightly bitter finish.

Drinkability and Overall Impression: I’ve quite enjoyed this beer and am looking forward to aging a couple of these to see how it changes over the next year or so. This is a well made version of the style and its very interesting to be able to explore the complexity contributed by the Brettanomyces as the primary ferementation yeast. My overall impression is that this is a very well made beer that can be summed up in two words, “complex” and “subtle.”

04-09-2012 01:04:36 | More by drtth
Photo of dertyd


3.75/5  rDev -13.4%

05-31-2014 08:02:15 | More by dertyd
Photo of sideshowe


5/5  rDev +15.5%

11-15-2011 13:57:39 | More by sideshowe
Photo of ObeMaltKinobee


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

03-23-2012 10:27:19 | More by ObeMaltKinobee
Photo of dansmcd


4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

02-14-2014 22:14:02 | More by dansmcd
Photo of freduardo


4/5  rDev -7.6%

11-14-2011 16:43:32 | More by freduardo
Photo of KajII

North Carolina

3.83/5  rDev -11.5%

[Best served in a Tuilp glass]

The pour was a murky golden yellow with an average sized (1-2 finger) white frothy head that dissipated down to a thin film and had some fair spotty lacing.

The aroma was a bit musty with a light grain malt, some citrus hops and a funky scented yeast with notes of citrus (lemon), green apple and apricot.

The taste was a little sweet and acidic with notes of lemon and apricot in the beginning but became sour very quickly with a big note of green apple and being a bit acetic towards the end. The flavor lasted a good long time after the swallow with a strong sour fruity ending.

Mouthfeel was light in body and dry in texture with a nice prickly carbonation.

Overall a great sour Blonde Ale with a nice apple peel bite at the end...

03-11-2012 18:48:41 | More by KajII
Photo of spark3148857


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

05-28-2013 01:37:25 | More by spark3148857
Photo of SFLpunk


4.8/5  rDev +10.9%

Thanks to millerbuffoon for this awesome hook-up. 375mL brown glass cork and caged bottle. Batch 005. All Brett baby!

Pours a golden yellow, somewhat hazy/cloudy with thin bright white head that stays despite being thin. Nose is lovely and fruity. Like lemons and clover and honeysuckle and cotton and lavender and lemongrass and bee balm. Could go on and on about this nose! Just perfect.

Palate is bitingly sour for being all brett. Lemon balm and lemon grass are the forerunners for taste. Mouthfeel is medium-light-bodied, but there's this almost waxy texture (not in a bad way). Ethereal after a sip or two, the aromas mentioned above come out on the palate, but it's still dominate by lemongrass. Excellent balance provides for a very pleasant drinking experience. Long, spritely finish.

Notes: Amazing. Simply perfect.

10-04-2011 04:45:57 | More by SFLpunk
Photo of BeerThursdays


4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

01-20-2013 14:09:06 | More by BeerThursdays
Photo of Bartos


4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

04-25-2014 01:26:47 | More by Bartos
Photo of SPRichard

New Jersey

4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

12-27-2011 15:15:18 | More by SPRichard
Photo of Rand_ale_Thor


3.75/5  rDev -13.4%

06-05-2013 02:19:35 | More by Rand_ale_Thor
Photo of lovindahops

New York

4.35/5  rDev +0.5%

Ahhhh yes. The rarity of a Russian River beer for me. So thankful whenever I get a chance to try

A- sanctification pours a golden yellow body with consistent carbonation racing to the top. Thin white ring of foam lifts itself on the edges while lacing runs pretty rampant on the glass

S- delicious Brett and lemony scents are crossed by the tart and sour scent of the brew. Very zesty and fresh for the scent

T- massive sour flavors blast the mouth and palate. The lemon and citrus properties really help sanctification make a puckered finish. Delicious

M- stinging waves of sour flavor which is really a tasteful after thought

O- RR is amazing. Sanctification is an excellent sour that I highly recommend seeking out. The usage of Brett in the brew is excellent

08-20-2012 23:48:42 | More by lovindahops
Photo of BeerTruth


4.83/5  rDev +11.5%

Pick this one up myself at the brewery this past summer, I think it's time to give this one a try.

Batch 003, 750 mL bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Pours a super clear burnt golden hue with a full fluffy two finger pillowy white head that slowly dies down. Stickiness remains all over the sides of the glass. Crazy bubbles race to the top. Smell is sour all the way. Tart cherries, sour apples, fresh cranberries, and faint lemongrass. Just a good ol' typical RR brew. Strong yeast presence and hints of wood in the nose as well. Taste starts off with a light lemon zest followed by tart Granny Smith apple flavors. Taste is sour, but not too sour. Yeast is present throughout, but is just one of the many flavors in this unique brew. Aftertaste is a bit oaky with hints of vanilla. Such a drinkable complex brew, not many breweries can accoplish this. Mouthfeel is light bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Everything about this beer is in check. No flavor stands out or overpowers the others. I haven't had a beer like this in a while, glad I still have more than half a bottle left on this blizzard like night. Pick this one up for sure.

Who's afraid of the "big bad BRET?"

12-04-2007 00:42:02 | More by BeerTruth
Photo of Bendurgin


3.75/5  rDev -13.4%

Thanks to Andy for sharing this one. Poured into a chalice. Pours a slightly hazy golden color a finger of fluffy white head that settles leavin some sticky lace. Lots of visible carbonation.

Lots of brett in the aroma, Hints of garden vegatable in the aroma with a good funky aroma. Slight hints of berries in the aroma. Funky brett on the pallet. A little bit of a band-aid (or adhesive strip) flavor with a touch of sourness on the finish.

The body is nice a light but the carbonation is a little bit high. I kind of just expands in your mouth. Overall this one is nice and funky. Pretty enjoyable.

10-28-2011 05:19:41 | More by Bendurgin
Sanctification from Russian River Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 2,000 ratings.